NEW YORK, Jan. 20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative announced today that it is launching its fourth annual search in the United States, Puerto Rico, and Canada for the next generation of women leaders. Now through March 8, 2015, girls who are high school sophomores and juniors can apply at ANNpower.org to become an ANNpower Fellow and receive leadership training and mentorship by global women leaders. The Initiative is a partnership between ANN INC., the parent Company of Ann Taylor and LOFT, and Vital Voices Global Partnership, a leading non-governmental organization.
"I think everyone knows a girl who has the potential to change the world," said Kay Krill, President and CEO of ANN INC. "These are the talented young women we're looking for to apply to become ANNpower Fellows. We want to invest in their ability to affect global progress by giving them the power to transform their communities and become leaders."
50 new ANNpower Fellows will be selected from a highly competitive application process to participate in the ANNpower Vital Voices Leadership Forum in Washington, D.C., June 14 – 17, 2015. At the Forum, the Fellows will meet and learn from influential and celebrated women leaders in business, politics, and media from across the globe, as well as executives from ANN INC., including the Company's President and CEO, Kay Krill. The curriculum equips young women with skills they need to realize their full potential as future leaders.
Following the Forum, the Fellows will be challenged to put their training into action by developing projects that address societal issues and applying for ANNpower Grants to implement their ideas. To date, the initiative has trained 150 girls, distributed more than $80,000 in grant funding, and positively impacted more than 16,000 people in 12 countries around the world.
"Year after year, we see all the ANNpower Fellows creating incredible impact in their communities," said Alyse Nelson, President and CEO of Vital Voices Global Partnership. "We believe that it's critical that companies and their leaders follow ANN INC.'s example in nurturing and supporting this innate passion and drive in young women who will undoubtedly go on to become future leaders of our world."
Selected Fellows will also have the opportunity to participate in global leadership events. This past year, ten ANNpower Fellows traveled to London for the 2014 Trust Women Conference, where leading advocates from across the globe gathered to take action and commit to empowering women.
"Being an ANNpower Fellow has connected me with global women leaders I could have only dreamed of meeting, never mind having them as a sound board for my own ideas. The mentorship I have received through this program has enhanced my confidence and my leadership skills. The best part is connecting with other girls from across the country who have a passion to change the world like me," said Elanie, a 2014 ANNpower Fellow and Grantee.
During the application period, Ann Taylor, Ann Taylor Factory, LOFT and LOFT Outlet stores across the U.S., Puerto Rico, and Canada will support the search for the next generation of leaders in stores. Additionally, the 50 young women selected will received a special discount card redeemable for two years at Ann Taylor and LOFT.
For more information about the ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative or to apply to become an ANNpower Fellow, please visit annpower.org.
About the ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative
The ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative is a groundbreaking partnership between ANN INC. and Vital Voices Global Partnership to empower young women from across the U.S. with the leadership skills they need to affect global progress, invest in their communities and begin their journeys as the next generation of leaders. The ANNpower Initiative aims to provide leadership skills and mentorship to 50 ANNpower Fellows annually and is designed to positively impact more than 5,500 people in their collective communities and around the world each year. Visit annpower.org for more information.
About ANN INC.
ANN INC. is the parent Company of Ann Taylor and LOFT, two of the leading women's specialty retail fashion brands in North America. As of November 1, 2014, the Company operated 1,050 Ann Taylor, Ann Taylor Factory, LOFT, LOFT Outlet and Lou & Grey stores in 47 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Canada. Our Ann Taylor and LOFT brands are also available online in more than 100 countries worldwide at AnnTaylor.com and LOFT.com or at our LOFT franchise stores in Mexico. Visit ANNINC.com for more information (NYSE: ANN).
About Vital Voices Global Partnership
Vital Voices Global Partnership is a leading non-governmental organization that identifies, invests in and brings visibility to extraordinary women around the world by unleashing their leadership potential to transform lives and accelerate peace and prosperity in their communities. Founded by Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 1997, the organization trains and mentors women leaders as agents of transformative change in economic development, human rights and political participation. The Vital Voices Global Leadership Network includes more than 14,000 leaders representing 144 countries who have trained and mentored 500,000 additional women and girls in their communities. Visit vitalvoices.org to learn more.
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SOURCE ANN INC.